Centre says no serious impact in India due to ransomware

New Delhi [India], May 15 : The Centre on Monday assured that India is not a victim of the ransomware attack, adding that the government is keeping a very close watch to ensure that these attacks can be addressed in an effective manner.

"As far as this cyber issue is concerned, the Government of India is keeping a very strong watch on it.

As per our information up to date, there have been isolated incidents in very limited areas in Andhra Pradesh and Kerala.

But we have been updating our whole security measures since March itself, software has been installed," Union Minister of Information and Technology Ravi Shankar Prasad said.

Prasad further said that the government is in touch with the banking system to reinforce their architecture.

"All these things have led to the current situation that India is not at all the victim of the attack in the manner the other countries of the world are facing today," he added.

In continuing to this, Prasad assured that the Centre is keeping a very close watch on this issue and also ensure that these attacks in India can be addressed in an effective manner.

The minister added that on a larger issue of reinforcing India's architecture, the government is going to set up cyber coordination centre by this year June end.

"We have given advisories to all the bodies to have cyber auditor, cyber drills, and various campaigns.

I want to assure the country that we are doing our best and India is an important digital power," Prasad said.

Meanwhile, cyber expert Pawan Duggal asserted that Ransomware attack is the biggest attack in the human history and India is thoroughly unprepared for this.

"The recent Ransomware attack has taken the world by storm but it is also the biggest Ransomware attack in the human history.

The nations and the stakeholders will have to be prepared for the cyber security and resilience. India as a nation is thoroughly unprepared to deal with such kind of cyber attacks," Duggal told ANI. Duggal suggested that the government of the worlds should wake up quickly and come up with dedicated cyber security legislations in the national territory.

"Currently the requirement is proactive political way and immediate actions so as to contain the damage which is going to be happening by this attack," he added.

Meanwhile, West Bengal's Power Minister Sovan Deb Chatterjee confirmed that some of the computers have been affected by this attack.

"When instantly I got the information I got in touch with my chairman who is responsible to look for this.

According to his information, these incidents happened and four of our computers got affected in the customer centres." Several computers at West Bengals power distribution company offices were attacked by the ransomware 'WannaCry' that was reported to have affected millions of computers worldwide last Friday.

Officials from the West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Company (WBSEDCL) confirmed the development and said it has been detected at four offices in West Midnapore district affecting PCs in four blocks of Belda, Datan, Narayngarh and Keshiyari.

After striking West Bengal Electricity utility, WannaCry ransomware has also struck Kerala's Wayanad Panchayat office.

Four computers in a Panchayat office in Wayanad have been suspected to attack by the virus. The authorities claim that the files could not open and there is a message demanding 300 dollars be put in the account within three days.

India's cyber security agency has alerted Internet users against damaging activities of 'WannaCry'- that critically infects work stations and locks them remotely.

The ransomware, which locks crucial files and data unless the user pays a ransom of (Dollar) 300 Bitcoin, has affected thousands of computers across the world, including India.

Meanwhile in Gujarat, the state government is now upgrading its computer systems with anti-virus software, and updating the Microsoft OS as well.

Source: ANI